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Newsmakers

Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) News/Business. (2013)

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Us 12, Washington 8, America 6, Obama 4, Steve Scalise 4, Canada 3, Pentagon 2, Paul Ryan 2, Louisiana 2, China 2, Russell 2, America Uncompetitive 1, United States 1, United States Border 1, Alberta 1, Italy 1, U.s. 1, Ghted 1, Russell Berman 1, Paul 1,
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  CSPAN    Newsmakers    Rep. Steve Scalise  
   (R-La.)  News/Business.  (2013)  

    March 17, 2013
    6:00 - 6:30pm EDT  

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next, "newsmakers with steve scalise. week, steve scalise from louisiana. and welcome. >> to reporters to help us with this conversation this morning. russell berman. heidi had the first question. >> you had your first meeting with the president with the republican conference in nearly three years this week. the you feel you are any closer on policy, in terms of warmer relations? take a we had a frank conversation with the president.
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we talked about that. again, it was a very frank and candid conversation. we put out a lot of ideas that we conservatives have. i think there will be areas the president is serious working with us where we can get things done and start addressing these fiscal and economic problems we have. we balance the budget in 10 years. the president has said clearly he is interested in not balancing in the next year -- 10 years. when it does get filed, he made it clear it will not balance. we talked about the importance of balancing our budget to show the american people that we will finally start controlling spending, but also focus on getting the economy back in track. i mentioned to the president if you want to start today and creating jobs, energy is a really good place to start.
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pen the stroke of the president could create 25,000 jobs. and look at the outer continental shelf, there are a lot of opportunities to create tens of thousands of good, high- paying jobs in the energy industry were not only do you , but youally good jobs also bring in treasury revenue that will reduce the deficit. you allow the country to become energy independent so we do not have to buy so many -- so much oil from the eastern countries that do not like us. we will see in the next few weeks if the president is serious about working with us. >> where did the president say i agree with you, let's do that? >> i specifically mentioned to the president on spending. he came as we said he will close the white house to tours. i said instead of these kinds of things of closing of the white house and threatening to lay off
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food inspectors, how about working with us on real specific ways that his own agency has identified as real waste in government? instead of laying off food inspectors, work with us to eliminate the 26 billion and fraud that has been identified in the food stamp program. there are very specific examples, not just things republicans have come up with. cut that instead of trying to make sequester cuts harmful for families. get rid of waste in spending. the proof will be in the pudding. if he is willing to work with us and get that done, we will find out in the next few weeks. takeover you satisfied with his response on the keystone pipeline? satisfied with his response on the keystone pipeline? what was your reaction to what he said? >> i still would like to see the president say yes to peace down. this is a yes or no question.
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it is whether or not canada can cross the united states border, and that is the only question the state department has. each store -- state has the authority to regulate where the pipe would go. that is a million barrels per day of energy from canada, who is a good friend of ours, that we do not have to get from the middle eastern countries. i would have liked them to say yes to it. he did say he is close to an answer, which is an improvement. everyone was looked at this independently has said this is something that is a no-brainer. we should do the keystone pipeline. a tremendous opportunity with 25,000 jobs. >> is there anything congress can do with this keystone pipeline? if he were to say no, can convert the around this? >> sure, i am the co-sponsor of a bill. we have passed legislation through congress -- this is a
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bipartisan issue, by the way. we're not talking about democrats versus republicans. the bills we have had to say, president, green light the keystone pipeline have had tremendous democrat support, not on the republican support. really the only people standing in the way right now is the president of the united states, but we will continue to try to do that legislatively, but at the end of the day, he has the legal authority and we're pushing to get this done. >> there is a new report out that most of the oil from alberta would be sent overseas. is this about shoring up u.s. energy security? >> some of the things we have seen, if this is green light li8 ghted, this will create many jobs. there are about $5 billion of private money ready to go right now to start building the pipeline. those jobs are the american
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jobs. the energy security we will get from our friend in canada. you had tankers every day coming through stealth louisiana. it goes into the loop and throughout the rest of the country and into the refineries. those million barrels do not need to come from the middle eastern countries that do not like us. when that gasoline is made here, there is the world market. it will lower the price of gas at the pump. again, it is a stable source from a friend of ours. our country uses 21 million barrels per day. we have to get it from somewhere. look at the turmoil in the middle east right now. how about working with a friend in canada where we can get a stable source of energy? by the way, china wants that. either china will get the jobs or america will. >> back to the budget for a minute. the republican study committee introduced its own competing alternative to the rhine and
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budget. you said before the ryan budget came out this week, it would wait to see what the house republican budget would look like. -- the republican study committee introduce its own competing alternative to the ryan budget. >> we will file a budget amendment. hopefully by the end of next week we will have a budget passed out of the house. i do not think anything we do is undermining the ryan budget. we have worked with paul ryan and his budget committee. and many of the budget committee members are rfc members. >> can you describe the key differences between the rfc budget, and the ryan budget? is ine, the ryan budget 10 years. that was a big objective
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republicans have pushed for. i have a five-year-old and three-year-old, and i do not think it is asking too much to balance the budget before they graduate from high school. right now the way the cbo scores it, we will balance in four years. save all working to medicare from bankruptcy. it goes bust right now and 11 years. we support the concept, but we are implementing premium support for people aged 59 or younger. i do not think that is a big difference philosophical it, because at the end of the day where both saving it from bankruptcy. president obama does not save it from bankruptcy at all. obama care expedites the bankruptcy. i think what we're doing is building upon the foundation and a strong budget that balances in 10 years. >> it is coming under criticism
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for fuzzy math. he uses revenue from unspecified tax return and does not identify a single leap -- the poll you would close. how is this honest accounting and how does this land and did it -- legitimacy to the budget process? >> there are no budget gimmicks in this document. it is not our numbers we're using. there is an independent referee, the congressional budget office, that scores everyone's budget. this for our budget, the president's budget. that will be the official number. they scored the house budget to balance in 10 years. a budget does not implement tax reform, it calls for tax reform. it calls on the various committees to do certain things. we will be calling on the natural resources and energy committee and commerce to increase energy production. that does not say exactly how to do it. the ways and means committee
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will be called upon to implement tax reform. what we mean is to close -- close loopholes. we closed loopholes to work overall rates. we have the highest corporate tax rate in the world right now. it makes america uncompetitive. instead of a 35% rate, which is the highest in the world, go down to a 25% rate. have a fair tax break for families so they know the rules of the game. so if they want a better system that is fair, there will also be able to have that option, too. the details will be worked out with the ways and means committee but it would have to be done in the revenue-neutral way. you cannot raise taxes at the end of the day. that gives us economic growth. >> as you know, you have to go after the big ones. you have to go after the sacred cows, the mortgage interest deduction, a charitable contribution. why can't republicans more --
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come out and say which one of those you would do away with? document rights the specific details of each of the component that the document lays out. a budget is of vision. the specifics are done by the committee. the ways and means committee is doing exactly what you're talking about here again they are having hearings. they have a great group of people looking at the best way to put a fair system in place to close the loopholes, lowers the rates for families and businesses. if you have your mortgage interest deduction and want to continue using the current system, you were able to do that. that is a good option for families to say let's see how it works best for me. >> it is a little-known part of budget, the assumption
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of revenues. are republicans quietly saying we support staying at the revenue level of 19 percent gdp, because it's so that seems to be a bit of movement on revenue? the current baseline is 19.1% of gdp. paul's budget they keep that, but a fair system in place. we go down to 18.7% of gdp in revenue. a little bit of a difference. at the end of the day we both call for real tax for reject reform that lowers rates. they do not need an accountant to do with basic tax filing, and also leads to job creation. every expert and economists will say if you have a fare code it will allow people to grow the economy. america can be competitive
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again. and we're really not competitive in the world right now. we have the highest corporate tax rate. but selling the jobs, too, america and that will grow the economy raging let's bring the jobs back to america, and that will grow the economy. hadome conservatives expressed concerns about that. how concerned are you about that, and would you support efforts that some have talked about to block bills that do not have a majority of republican support from coming to the floor? >> i have expressed my concerns about that. the general idea of what your talking about. i have voted against all three of the bills you mentioned. in general, what we talk to the leadership about is let's work to get the majority working with conservatives, uniting the conference and submit those
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ideas and bills over to the senate and make the bill -- make the senate do their job for once. they have not produced a budget in four years. they believe they are required by april 15 -- they are legally required to pass the budget by april 15. and we shamed the senate into doing a budget. they will do one, and it will contrast our budget with theirs. i think you will see it pass, not only with the majority of republicans, but it will show we're serious about getting our fiscal house in order. ownhy do you have your budget? why does the republican many have your own budget, have won budget? -- one budget? >> if you look at the past, not only has there been a house budget, there has also been an rfc budget as well.
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the members who vote for the budget have turned around and most everyone of them has voted for the house budget as well, because both documents are much better and revisions for the country but much better than where we currently are. think we are continuing to show there are a lot of different ways to run the country and get the fiscal house in order. paul's is a good document. we like ours as well. i am happy to vote for both of them, because i think they both advance not only the freedoms we all believe in, but helped the economy moving again. to go republicans say we just did a big tax increase as part of the fiscal cliff, but you look at the some of debt reduction so far that has been done. we have reduced the debt by a ratio of four-one spending cuts to revenue. every major bipartisan group that has looked at this has done
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a ratio more of a three-one. why is the revenue discussion closed at this point? >> the president ran on raising taxes. we ran on cutting taxes. he was able to get his tax hike. 600 billion in tax hikes. just them, but everyone making over for under $50,000. the 600 billion in new taxes. do not forget about obama care, the president's signature achievement in his first term. over 20 of those new tax hikes hit middle-class families. we're trying to repeal those. we want to completely repeal obama care, but the middle class taxes he includes. if you look at it, he has almost two trillion dollars in new taxes in the past four years. we said enough is enough. it hurts our economy. the president has admitted raising taxes and a bad economy
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kills jobs, so why would you keep raising taxes? control spending. washington spending is at the highest level in the history of the country. there is a spending problem in washington. it is not only heard in washington and our ability to balance the budget, it is hurting the economy. people in the country are going we men are managing to live within our means, why can -- we are managing to live within our means, why can't washington figure it out? >> as you know, democrats will not touch entitlement programs, she were willing to touch revenue. the you think we can really, think we canu really cut more? >> obama care is part of mandatory spending. each report says it will cost more money and add more to the deficit in the prior report. we have to address that problem.
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medicare right now is scheduled to go bankrupt. people say do not touch medicare. that means let it go bust. that is not right for seniors. it is not responsible for my generation and my kids. we have a plan to save it for bankruptcy so current seniors there would be no changes to medicare except for the fact it will not go bust. people of my generation, health care would work more like the members of congress get. my wife has a lot of options she chooses from, and we paid a price as a family. ultimately we have options. i think seniors should have those options, too. one of them would be traditional medicare. appreciation of this point that we are risking cutting very critical investments in our future? >> keep in mind when the president goes around the country threatening people about the sequester, federal spending has grown dramatically since he
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took office. in many cases, the sequester was an $85 billion cut. we have a 2.5 trillion dollar budget in revenue coming in. we of a 3.5 trillion dollar budget. federal spending is still high. in many of the cases were literally flat lining the growth. in washington, some how cut in growth equates to a cut. when you have spending at those high levels and do not have as much money coming in, you have a trillion more that you're spending than you have coming in. to go a follow-up on that. a quick follow up on that. as you know, your proposal would allow the pentagon more flexibility in implementing the cuts, and democrats say they want more flexibility for the domestic agencies as well. is that a fair trade? >> but they are willing to work with us. the first premise has to be we will have real cuts in spending
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because washington has a spending problem. they have to admit this is a problem. then we can work to fix it. personally i would rather go into targeted areas and cut things that do not work. if they are willing to work with us and have an adult conversation about that, that is fine, but six months ago we tried to build -- bring this up before it was a crisis. we passed a bill out of the house to do what you're talking about and the senate did not take it up for six months. the president has not talked about until a week before the crisis. people are tired of washington living crisis to crisis. i am glad the senate is finally engaged now that it has come to pass. and we will be willing to work with them, but it is a little late in the game to be talking about it after it happened. there is enough common ground on a concept that we do not to worry about a government shut down? you all will come together and
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give everyone flexibility to implement the cuts? >> we have made it clear we want to lock in the new lower levels of spending. we will continue funding the government of the local level -- a world level, which is a more responsible approach. which is a more responsible approach. the president backed away from it when he saw real cuts would happen. we have to hold him to his word. that is going to happen. if the senate wants to work with us on the targeted cuts, we're sitting here ready to go. better late than never. we will be happy to have that conversation. >> we have a few minutes left. go ahead. >> switching gears to immigration, where do you stand on that? speaker said he is open to it. deal.n to a big
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where do you stand on that? >> i am really glad we're finally having a conversation about immigration reform. a number of our members are actively engaged in the debate. we have the chairman of fiduciary -- judiciary committee. one of our most articulate spokespeople on this issue is very actively engaged in helping work on and draft legislation and try to find some good, conservative solutions to this problem. you need to start with a broken the legal system of immigration. everyone recognizes our legal system -- my great grandparents came here from italy. down over theken years. and so we need to fix the legal parts of our system, and then obviously you have parts of the legal immigration system that are broken as well. -- of the legal immigration
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system that is broken as well. if there is a comprehensive agreement, then let's take a look at that and move it, too, but i am glad we have some good, smart members that are in the middle of the debate and working on this problem in a really good, smart way. >> in the center of the debate is the path to citizenship. the conventional wisdom is it would have a hard time getting through the conservative bloc in the house of which you lead. where do you stand on that central question? >> this has been an area where some of the talks have broken down in the past. not just republicans. a lot of labor -- labor unions, which really drive the agenda of liberals in washington. and if we're going to be fair, we ought to put that on the table, too. we are willing to talk about that and say it is not fair for someone who is here illegally to be able to jump ahead of wind
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against those waiting in line. that is why we need to fix the system so that if someone is here illegally they can say i can play by the rules and still have a path to come here. i think we ought to start with the premise of the american dream. in years past people came to america to seek out the american dream. we just passed legislation in the house to say for the young people that have come here to learn and educational systems and they get really good science and technology degrees, our law makes them leave the country and go compete as -- compete against us when they want to stay and take jobs in america. a but you will not take position on the path to citizenship? >> i think the smart members of the committee will deal to come up with a good solution. >> congressman steve scalise, thank you for being our newsmaker.
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>> we're back with our reporters. russell, i will begin with you. we heard from steve scalise. this past week the house budget chairman paul ryan put out a 10- year budget. senate democrats put up their 10-year budget. the president goes to capitol hill in search of this grand bargain. when and how does that sort of thing come to the other? >> they have obviously gone through a lot of rounds on the fiscal negotiations. what they are looking at now is going back to basics, to what they call the regular order process for the house would pass its budget, the senate would pass its budget, and then they would go to a conference committee to see if they can narrow the difference is enough to get a deal. even at the president, who has always talked about how optimistic he is, even he says the gatt may be too wide for them to get a deal -- gap may be too wide for them to get a deal.
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that seems to be the most likely avenue, the formal process. of course the white house would be involved. that's what happened over the next few months. the next big deadline is not until the debt ceiling comes up again, sometime between may and the summer based on the last legislation they pass. obviously the president is refusing to negotiate again on the debt ceiling. >> if they did that, they came together and got some sort of grand bargain in the budget process, does that avoid deadlines like the debt ceiling? does it get wrapped into there and deal with sequestration? >> that would be the idea. resolve the issues for the past several years. so the president would not have
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to do with it in the next couple of years. debating aing now continuing resolution which funds the government, keep the government running, what is the difference between that and what russell was talking about? >> we have not had budgets. we of been running on the stopgap system of confrontations every six months between democrats and republicans over the so-called continuing resolutions which keep the government running. over the past two years we have seen this circus of arguments between the two sides over extracting additional spending cuts in exchange for continuing resolutions. the one interesting thing i saw from the congressman is a looks like maybe we will see an end to that, and maybe the house will be able to except with the senate has done in their continuing resolution which both sides are just concerned about
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the sequester right now, and a look -- looks like house republicans are most concerned about the pentagon and giving the pentagon the flexibility to implement the cuts. being able to allow those departments the flexibility to implement those cuts. it looks like maybe they can come together on an agreement and will avoid another government shut down. >> the senate democrats and house republicans to a quick conference on the continuing resolution. almostway to look at it as if they are taking baby steps. they're not fighting as much ,ver the day today fighting which is what a couple of years ago. now they're starting to work better on that. they're turning their attention to see if they could extend that to the medium-term and long-term budget impacts. and you study represents the
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conservative part of the republican conference. years passed, the freshman tea party came in. there seemed to be a faction within the party. do you see less of that or more of it as we go forward? >> i think there was a sense that perhaps the tea party had been muted a bit. after all, they voted for a tax increase and got a tax increase through the house. russell asked the congressman rule, ae house staastert willingness to bring a bill to the floor that is not supported by the majority of the party. that said, now that the party has agreed to the revenue increases, there is a line they feel cannot be crossed. that is why you see the congressman talking in very absolute terms about no